Meshrano Jirga summons top election officials
KABUL (PAN): The Meshrano Jirga on Tuesday decided to summon top election officials to brief the upper house on progress and problems in the lead-up to next year’s presidential and provincial council polls.
Participating in a debate on problems concerning the April 5 vote, lawmakers decided to summon senior officials of Independent Election Commission (IEC) and the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission (IECC) in the near future.
Khaliqdad Balaghi from Kabul accused IECC members of not properly investigating complaints against presidential candidates. “The objections should be probed in a way that no one’s rights are abused. We have noticed rights of some contenders have been violated,” the MP said.
Without going into details, Balaghi asked the upper house to increase its monitoring of the electoral process and ensure no one’s rights were abused.
His colleague from central Kapisa province, Mohiuddin Munsif, alleged the IECC was yet to open its offices in provinces to receive complaints from the people. He asked the watchdog to open such offices as soon as possible.
However, the IECC has said residents of provinces could register their complaints with the IEC offices concerned.
Hidayatullah Rihayee, who represents central Bamyan province in the Senate, said presidential and provincial council candidates had not been offered a proper time for electioneering.
Nisar Ahmad Haris from Kabul believed the IECC should extend the period of filing complaints against candidates because the allotted time had not been enough.
He expressed his aversion to granting Afghan refugees in Pakistan and Iran their right to vote in the upcoming elections on the ground that both neighbouring might interfere in the process.
Deputy Chairman Mohammad Alam Ezedyar, who presided over the session, said officials of the two electoral bodies should appear soon before the upper house to brief lawmakers on the progress and problems, a decision approved by a majority of members.
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